Ross Blacklock

Defensive Tackle

TCU

6' 4"

305 lbs

SCOUTING GRADE

6.85

Injury History: Achilles injury (2018)

Games Evaluated: 2019 Vs: Purdue, Baylor, SMU, Oklahoma

Report By: Peter Vandeventer

Scouting Report

ATHLETICISM: 7.12

Q.A.B. / C.O.D.: 7.00
Flexibility: 6.80
Explosiveness: 7.40
Playing Speed: 7.10
Coordination: 7.30

When he gets a full head of steam, he can have issues changing directions but of the snap, he moves well and can be seen due to his success with stunting. He is quick and rarely finds himself out of the play due to balance issues.He has a good lower body and it shows on his tape. Does have questions with consistent flexibility but he was still 1 year removed from Achilles injury which could be a reason for some flexibility consistency. Good explosiveness from Blacklock. Strong first step and shoots hands well and is always on the attack.Good play speed. Quick and fast for a defender his size and for his position. Goes hand in hand with his high motor. Engages all his muscles and is very fluid throughout plays along with good body control.

PASS RUSH ABILITY: 7.34

Initial Quickness: 7.40
Use of Hands: 7.50
Leverage: 7.10
Pass Rush Moves: 7.30
Finish Ability: 7.40

Not the quickest out of his stance but his first step is directly upfield and is strong. Followed well with his hands but doesn't play any games with getting upfield after the snap. Quick, strong hands and uses it to create separation and disengage. Hand placement is very good overall, shoots hands forward and fights. Plays with leverage. Stays low with strong leg drive and creates leverage with low pads and quickness out of stance. Uses swim move and swipe & rip. Bull rush could use work but does a good job incorporating speed and hands into his approach. He stunts well and was asked to do it often in college. Finishes very well. When he doesn't get initial penetration, he does hold the pocket and keeps QB contain along with gaining ground. High motor shows in his ability to finish.

COMPETES: 7.00

Toughness: 6.90
Consistency/Motor: 7.60
Production: 6.50

Tough player for sure. As an interior defender, it's almost a given. Tasked with double teams at times and splits with success. Doesn't take plays off and can produce in the run and pass game.Great motor from Ross. Plays well throughout the play against the pass. Also showed a tendency to chase backs to the sideline. Pretty consistent penetration from the interior. It's hard to assess production as an interior defensive lineman, especially in a defense like TCUs. But he only totals 5.5 sacks and 67 tackles in his college career (2 seasons). Definitely not as good as it could be tho.

AGAINST THE RUN: 6.85

Play with Leverage: 6.80
Stack and Shed: 6.00
Gap Shooting Ability: 7.40
Run at Him: 6.40
Run Away: 7.40
Tackling/Hitting: 7.10

Good, not great, at playing with leverage. He can start off well in plays with good pad level but after his first attempts, he can start to rise up which shows in his tendency to not hold his spot that long against the run. Adequate job at stacking and shedding blocks. He just doesn't put himself in the position to stack and shed. Gets too aggressive and doesn't hold the best angle to disengage and make a play on ball carriers. Very Good at shooting gaps and penetrating the backfield. When teams pulled guards across his face, he often split the block and disrupted the play. Just too quick. Doesn't overpower opposing lineman. Wasn't asked to be an anchor and didn't need to. Tries to be more aggressive at times which cause an issue with getting too far upfield or creating a crease/run lane. Very good when the run is away from him/are on outside runs. He outruns blocks and can get around down blocks. Can beat pulling lineman well. Can penetrate well and get upfield while running down the LOS to make a play in the backfield. Does a good job wrapping up and taking ball carrier/QBs down. Doesn't appear to have an issue with tackle form.

INTELLIGENCE: 7.10

Instincts: 7.20
Learn/Retain: 6.80
Teamwork: 7.30

Very good instincts, shoots gaps and trusts his spatial awareness. Understands blocking schemes and anticipates well. Good when it comes with learning and retaining. Developed as the season progressed but it didn't show statistically. Stunts very well with other pass rushers and mixes his approach and timing with it.

STRENGTHS

Stretches out run plays and will make lineman have to move to keep up with him. Quick first step and strong hands, simply has quicker and stronger hands than anyone he faced. Penetrates the backfield often by simply getting out of his stance quicker or by using a swipe and rip. Shoots inside the shoulders of double teams and split them well. Also uses a swim move but doesn't incorporate it at the best of times. Stays on the ball and doesn't get taken out of plays that much. Hight motor that is relentlessly at the point of attack. Pushes the pocket well and is often faced with double teams and disengages pretty successfully. When opposing offenses try to shift and move the pocket, Blacklock will simply beat the lineman to their spots. Was asked to stunt often and did it with success.

WEAKNESSES

Not a two gapping DL, and you don't see him stacking and shedding but rather is on the attack likely because he doesn't have the pure strength to create separation without using his speed/quickness which goes along with the lack of the use of a bull rush. Doesn't keep rush lanes clean, will go all over the place and create creases for QBs to run through (which he often closed and made plays on at TCU, but something that won't happen as much at the next level).

BIG PICTURE

Ross Blacklock is a three-down NFL DT with his ability to make plays against the pass and run. Unique athleticism that allows him to stunt and make plays from the middle of the line. Better suited to perform against zone run schemes than against a downhill scheme. But he can play in whatever defense a team runs due to his versatility. Expect him to go at the end of the 1st or early 2nd. Blacklock is one of the best IDL in this draft class.

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